With a gritty, nail-biting third-period performance, Michigan State hockey took down No. 10 Ohio State 4-2 Thursday night.
MSU didn't play as cleanly in the first two periods, but once it gained momentum and got into a groove, it was able to pull off the upset, picking up its third-straight Big Ten win.
Both teams got off to an aggressive and competitive start, passing the puck through the air as opposed to sliding it across the ice. Right off the bat, it seemed to be an even matchup.
Sophomore forward Tanner Kelly got the first penalty of the night, but MSU killed it off, marking the first penalty kill of the game for the Spartans.
OSU’s freshman defenseman Tyler Duke scored his first goal of the season at the 14:39 mark, putting the Buckeyes on the board first.
A goal from freshman defenseman Matt Basgall during a power play put MSU on the board 16:50 into the first period – only the third PP goal given up by Ohio State this season.
With just under one minute remaining in the period, a two-minute penalty was called on OSU’s junior forward Joe Dunlap for interference.
Both teams headed into the locker room for the first intermission tied at 1-1.
An impressive goal was scored by freshman forward Karsen Dorwart following a spin move and diagonal shot, with assists from senior forward Jagger Joshua and freshman forward Daniel Russel put Michigan State back on top, 2-1, 6:01 into the second period.
Another Spartan power play came when OSU’s fifth-year forward Jake Wise was sent to the penalty box for two minutes on a hooking call.
Immediately following the power play, a turnover by the Spartans allowed Wise a wide-open, breakaway shot with no defenders in sight and graduate transfer Dylan St. Cyr was unable to stop the shot, tying the game 2-2.
Michigan State and Ohio State went into the locker room tied at the end of the second period.
St. Cyr saved two back-to-back Buckeye shots 4:11 into the third period, putting him at 23 on the night.
Ohio State earned another power play following a hitting-from-behind call on Joshua at the 4:56 mark, but the Buckeyes were unable to capitalize on the extra-man advantage.
Shoudy almost snuck the puck into the net at the 11:37 mark, but it was saved by OSU’s sophomore goaltender Jakub Dobeš.
Michigan State had multiple missed opportunities to put another point on the board. Russel was finally able to get one past Dobeš for his fourth goal of the season and MSU was up 3-2 with 3:36 left to play.
The save of the game came from St. Cyr with 1:30 left to play. OSU sophomore defenseman Mason Lohrei had the opportunity to tie the game again when St. Cyr went behind the net, but he and a frenzy of MSU skaters scrambled to stop the puck from going in, lessening Ohio State’s chances of a comeback.
St. Cyr walked away with 32 saves on the night, while Dobeš had 24. His performance against the Buckeyes gives St. Cyr a .938 save percentage and 1.90 AVG on the season.
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With less than a minute to go in the game, an empty net goal by graduate forward Justin Jallen iced the game for the Spartans, 4-2.
The Spartans and Buckeyes return to Munn Ice Arena for the last game in the series Friday night. Puck drops at 7 p.m.
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